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Should I be a SAHM

(5 Posts)
RedSonja Wed 21-Oct-09 10:50:34

Have 2 DCs both at school. We are in a good financial position and can comfortably manage on DPs salary from his job which he really enjoys.

I'm professionally qualified and before had DCs earned about the same as DP. I liked my work but always found it a bit stressful and was quite relieved when I could just give it all up to be a mum. However I do find being a SAHM hard work as I grew up as a single child and having to deal with 2 shouty (but lovely) kids with all their demands does not come naturally to me.

While kids pre-school I worked part time and was able to find temporary jobs which gave me a lot of time off in the summer. After paying for childcare, I never netted much cash and the jobs were pretty boring (lower level than pre- DCs) but I always thought that the main point was to hang on in there until DCs went to school and I would be able to move onto something better or start freelancing.

Now DCs are at school and I am stuck in a maze of circular arguments with myself and DP about what to do.

Getting a PT job is possible but do not know what to do about childcare - especially in the holidays. Have investigated a wide range of options but have no family support e.g. grandaprents etc and DP and I keep coming back to the conclusion that given that we don't actually need the money, all of them are a lot more hassle than just having me stay at home.

But then I start worrying that will eventually become unemployable (am 47 years old) so what would happen if something happened to DP? PLus will I send out negative role model to DCs. Plus what about all those years of training, education & experience gone to waste? PLus also, if I did earn some more money could use it to save for the kids in future e.g. university fees etc.

Have considered going freelance but am finding it really hard to get started as am not a very confident person and basically find myself dreaming up all kinds of barriers to this happening which results in me becoming paralysed with indecision and just giving up thinking about it.

The other option therefore is to be a SAHM but use my skills as a volunteer to help out charities & community groups. I have done this over the past year and have enjoyed it but at times it can be frustrating being a volunteer & so then start back on the idea of getting job.

Having written all this I can see it sounds pretty pathetic especially compared to people who are struggling to make ends meet - surely I should be able to just get my act together and decide one thing or the other.

Has anyone else been around this endless loop & what did you decide?

thedollshouse Wed 21-Oct-09 11:00:21

I don't think you should be a SAHM. From reading your post it sounds as if you do want a career for yourself. I think you should consider the freelance route. There is a thread for mums considering going freelance, have a look, I am sure there are lots of mums on there who can help you with the confidence issues.

Good luck!

preciouslillywhite Wed 21-Oct-09 11:11:28

I am a SAHM- three dcs, all now at school. I was delighted at the prospect of giving up work 6 years ago (had twins and we couldn't afford childcare costs, and a rotten job, so it was an easy decision to make.)

I would now advise anyone who asked me- if you have school age children, try, try, try and do part time work if you can, especially if you like the field you're in and find the work fulfilling. I am now having to retrain to find work because I've not had a Proper Job since my son was born 12 years ago, and it's a struggle. And maybe it's just me, but I do think people have an "attitude" to women who have school age kids and don't work. I've found that to be the case, anyway.

Once you get out of the work loop- tis very hard to get in again!

RedSonja Wed 21-Oct-09 11:30:46

Hi plw - think your coment about the "attitude" is spot on.

I do feel like I can't make any negative comment about my stay at home life to other mums who all work about my situation as they are all juggling loads of issues of work/ childcare/ family life etc. But then I go home and think - well at least I don't have all that stress and maybe that's better for my family. Arghhhhhh!

Flyonthewindscreen Wed 21-Oct-09 14:40:00

I am also a SAHM with school age children. I do a little freelance work but only because the employer approached me, I wouldn't have the confidence to drum up any work myself. But at least a little something or other workwise makes you keep a little of your "work head" on and gives you something to put on a CV if a more substantial job comes up. So I would say why not try to do something freelance if that is a possibility.

IMO once you have been out of the job market for a while, childcare/juggling family responsibilities etc issues etc start to make working seem impossible but most problems could be sorted if needed. I went back to work when my first DC was 10 months and just got on and sorted childcare, everything else that needed organising, no sweat. But after being at home since having my second DC 5 years ago, working seems to have far more obstacles.

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